Kent Bush: Patience needs equal portion to faith

Kent Bush

There is no better expression of hope and faith than planting a seed.

Even after 100 successful tries, it is still amazing that someone would take an acorn and put it in the ground with the full expectation that an oak tree will take its place.

Pastor Robert H. Schuller with Crystal Cathedral in Kansas said, "Anyone can count the seeds in an apple, but only God can count the number of apples in a seed."

One missionary told a story of his work with a nomadic tribe of people. He was trying to explain how they could plant corn in the ground and, one day soon, they would have an entire field of corn plants to feed them.

However, the people had never experienced this miracle before, and they were hungry now. So they went out into the field, dug up the corn, cooked it and ate it.

Patience needs an equal portion of faith for life's recipe to produce positive results. One area where this can be seen is with a wonderful program in Uganda called Arise Africa International.

I recently had the great pleasure of eating Mexican food in Kansas with a Ugandan man and his wife. His spiritual, financial and emotional ministry to the people of that east African country is astounding.

For 35 years, Rev. Webster Carroll planted seeds of Christianity in Uganda by teaching, preaching and ministering to needy people. Christianity was dormant in the country during the persecution by the communist-supported rule of Idi Amin through 1979. But that time is over.

When Rev. Carroll retired in 1998, Arise Africa was born. Arise Africa is overseen by Pastor Godfrey Wanamista and his wife, Joy. They have planted more than 100 churches by raising up leaders inside of an existing church and exporting them to a surrounding community as a leader of a brand new church. When that church is established and produces leaders capable of it, that church may then plant a church.

One of the biggest challenges for Christianity in Uganda and many African countries is the spread of Islam. Islam is a religion, but their growth is as much fiscal as it is spiritual.

With money that is thought to be funneled into the country through governments like Gadhafi’s Libya and other Islamic strongholds in North Africa, clerics and bankers are able to offer interest-free loans to Muslim customers.

That has led to an explosion in the numbers of Muslims in the country.

Arise Africa leader Wanamista knows that makes his work of spreading Christianity more difficult. However, he is not discouraged.

"God is powerful, and we rely on him," Wanamista said. "In a business deal, Muslims win. But when we share the love of God with individuals, they become excited about the good news."

Arise Africa shares the love of God through preaching and teaching, but it also ministers to the needs of Ugandans who have been hit especially hard by war, poverty and AIDS.

Arise Africa hosts medical mission camps for residents, childcare, a home development ministry and have even opened an orphanage in Bukaleba, near Jinja, Uganda's second largest city. In the future, they hope to add a school and a hospital to their ministries.

It was great to hear the stories and feel the excitement of a man who has given his life to serving God and ministering to those in need.

To find out more about Arise Africa, visit their website at